Painting a mural in your kid’s room isn’t hard but does take a little time to do and you don’t really need to have any artistic skills. Here are a few tips to help you create the mural of your kid’s dreams.
Theme: Keep it simple and something you know the kids will like since once it’s finished, you’ll have problems if the kids don’t like it or are even afraid of it. Draw it out on paper and make any changes or adjustments then.
Location: Is it on one wall, two walls, top or bottom? Keep in mind where objects will be placed since you don’t want to completely cover your artwork with furniture.
Room Preparation: Remove all furniture or cover with drop clothes. Cover the flooring; remove wall plates and tape any fixtures you don’t want painted. It’s also a good idea to paint the walls with a flat white paint before you start your mural.
Putting Your Design on the Wall
Overhead Projector: You can borrow one from your kid’s school for the weekend. Simply photocopy your image onto an acetate sheet and shine on the wall using the projector to adjust the overall size.
Projector: Borrow one from your office and hook it up to your laptop and project the image onto the wall adjusting for overall size. Once your image is projected, trace the outlines using a light pencil line. Use a ruler for straight lines or round objects like plates to make circles.
Preparing to Paint
Depending on your design, you may need everything from a fine artist brush to a roller. Other items can be used to give “texture” such as a sponge or stiff brush.
Green or blue painter’s tape is great for painting straight lines.
Latex paint is recommended since it cleans easily with water. “Scrubable” paint will also last longer, especially in the kid’s room. Buying paint in the different colors you’ve chosen may be expensive especially if you have a lot of colors. A more cost effective solution would be to mix your own colors.
Buy yellow, a medium blue and red along with black and white. Go online and look up the Munsell Color Wheel for color combinations. An example would be mixing 1 part blue with 1 part yellow to make green. Adjust the color by adding either more blue or yellow. You can also change the tint by adding black or white. Be careful when using white however since It’s much easier to make a paint color darker than it is to make paint a lighter color.
Have a lot of plastic containers with lids on hand. Yogurt and sour cream containers are a good example. When mixing your colors, here are a few tips:
Always mix a little more than you need. You don’t want to run out of paint before you finish painting the area. It will be almost impossible to mix a new batch to match.
Use a dedicated spoon or ladle to take paint from the original containers. You don’t want to mix other colors into your original containers or the paint will be hard to use.
When mixing, place the lighter color in the mixing container and slowly add the darker color. This will help control the color you’re looking for. Mix with a craft stick making sure that the paints are thoroughly mixed and there aren’t any of the original colors left.
Have a plank of wood painted with the same paint you originally painted the room with. Brush a bit of the paint you mixed onto the plank and let dry so that you can see what the final color will be and adjust as needed. Most paints dry a little darker.
When finished with the mixed color, paint a dab on the lid and cover. You may need it later for touch-ups or you may use it to mix another color.
Make sure your brushes and any other items you use to paint with are cleaned thoroughly after each use. You don’t want a streak of a different color mixing in.
This is the fun part of the project. At this point you’re just painting inside the lines. Here are a few suggestions:
Start painting the background first starting with the larger areas. If
you are painting an area that will have an outline, do not paint right to the line. Leave a very slight space so that you can see where the outline will go. Make sure the paint near the area you are painting is dry, just in case.
When painting the foreground, start with the larger areas first remembering to leave the pencil lines exposed if they are to be outlined.
Painter’s tape is ideal for not only making straight lines but lines with the thickness you want. Again, wait for the paint to dry before putting painter’s tape on.
When painting, especially outlines, don’t go too slow as if you were using a pencil. Try to use longer strokes. This will give you cleaner lines with less “wiggles” in it.
Use your left over paint for touch-ups where needed. If sealed properly, the paint should last for months.
Interested in having WTDWTK show your group or event how to paint a mural in your kid’s room in person? Contact Brian Presley at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.